News Sunday, APRIL 04th, 1999

Radio Prague E-news date: April 4th, 1999

Those were the headlines and now the news in more detail

Bus crash kills 4 people

Four people are reported to have been killed in an accident on the Austrian B202 highway when an Austrian car carrying four passengers slammed into an oncoming Czech tourist bus. One person on the bus and three of the car's passengers were killed instantly, four more people are reported to have been seriously injured. According to an Austrian police spokesman the accident was caused by the Austrian car driver who was apparently speeding and failed to give the Czech tourist bus right of way.

HIV infected patient awarded compensation

A Prague court has awarded a 24 year old man who was infected with HIV during a blood transfusion one and a half million crowns in compensation. The hospital in question is planning to appeal the verdict claiming that the youth had been infected earlier than he claimed, that is before the hospital was warned to test its blood supplies. The defendant told the ctk that if the hospital appeals his client is unlikely to ever see the money since his health condition is deteriorating sharply. He is said to have been infected 13 years ago.

Czech humanitarian aid for Kosovo

The first airload of government-funded humanitarian aid for Kosovo will be dispatched from Prague's Ruzyne airport this weekend. It will contain 14 tons of tinned and dry foodstuffs, basic necessities and blankets. It is to be flown to Tirana and distributed under the supervision of the Red Cross and the UN High Commissioner for Refugees. The Czech government has earmarked 5 million crowns in aid of Kosovo, and various Czech charities, such as Vision 97, the Open Society Fund, the VIA Foundation and Charter 77, among others, have made significant financial contributions.

More Czechs support strikes

In a related development, the latest opinion survey on the NATO air strikes against Yugoslavia has revealed that the number of Czechs who support the air strikes has risen by 5% in the last 2 days. 40% Czechs now support the use of force against the Milosevic regime, 40% are against, the remainder are undecided. The vast majority of Czechs do feel however that the Czech Republic should do more on the humanitarian front than send out a field hospital and transport plane to Macedonia.

Temelin -Gregr

The Czech government is still divided over the future of the nuclear power plant under construction in southern Bohemia. Industry and trade minister Miroslav Gregr, who is the environment minister's main opponent in Cabinet, told Czech Radio on Saturday that if he failed to win this argument he would seriously consider resigning from office. The future of Temelin is too big an issue, Gregr noted, a decision to scrap it would cost the country 100 billion crowns and would play havoc with my long term plans for the development of Czech industry. The industry minister likewise predicted that a decision to halt Temelin's construction would result in the bankruptcy of the country's power giant CEZ.

Kavan - Yemen

On a two day official visit to Yemen Czech foreign minister Jan Kavan has met with the country's premier Abdal Karim Irjani and foreign minister Abdal Kadir Badzammal. The talks centred around bilateral relations and means of revitalizing trade, which has been stagnant in recent years. Yemen is interested in the Czech arms manufacture and Skoda cars, the Czech Republic in Yemen's natural resources. This country's ties with Yemen date back to the days of the First Republic.

And finally a look at the weather: people are enjoying a long Easter weekend and thankfully the weather is being most cooperative. Sunday is expected to be another warm and sunny day although we are warned that in the western part of the country the late afternoon could bring clouds and scattered rain showers. Nevertheless day temps are expected to remain fairly high - between 14 and 18 degs C.